A. When selling any real estate, the Seller must have a new Deed prepared. Additionally if the real estate is a residential dwelling, a smoke certification and final paid water and sewer readings (if applicable) will be required. Depending on where you live you may also be required to provide a final light invoice and light lien letter. If the property is a condominium additional documents will be required including a 6D Certificate and Certificate of Insurance.
Q. If I am selling, how does my current mortgage get paid off?
A. A Seller will need to provide the account number and customer service phone number of any loans that will be paid at the closing. A social security number and authorization is also usually required.
Q. If I am purchasing or refinancing, what do I need to bring to my closing?
A. A Buyer will always need a picture form identification such as a driver's license or valid Passport. In some situations 2 forms of identification are required.
Q. As a Buyer, can I pay my closing costs with a personal check?
A. NO. Any Buyer/borrower MUST pay closing costs with a bank check or wire. Since a closing attorney must have "good funds" for a closing, personal checks, equity line checks and investment checks are not accepted.
Q. As a Buyer should I have a home inspection?
A. Yes we strongly recommend that all Buyers have a home inspection completed before signing a Purchase and Sale Agreement.
Q. What is a Homestead and do I need one?
A. The Massachusetts Homestead Law protects homeowners in MA from having their primary residence sold in order to payoff an unsecured debt such as a credit card debt. There is an automatic Homestead for all homeowners for their primary residence of up to $125,000.00 in protection for their equity. There is also an option to Declare a Homestead whereby the homeowner files a Declaration of Homestead with the Registry of Deeds. The Declared Homestead protects a homeowner's equity up to $500.000.00.
Q. Do I need to attend the closing?
A. When selling, most Sellers do not attend their own closings. Sellers have signed their Deed personally and then give their attorney Power of Attorney to attend the closing. When buying a purchaser must be present at the closing unless prior arrangements have been made with their lender whereby the buyer/borrower grants someone Power of Attorney to act in their place. Such appointments are not customary and must be approved by the borrower's lender well in advance of closing.
Q. When do I get my keys for the closing?
A. The closing is a two step process. The first step is the actual closing where the Deed is exchanged and documents are executed. The second step is recording the documents including the Deed. The closing attorney will record the Deed at the appropriate Registry of Deeds. Once the Deed is recorded you will be given the keys which is when you will have access and can take possession of the property.
Q. How do I get a copy of my Deed?
A. You can access all recorded documents by visiting www.masslandrecords.com.